Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Writers Group and New Novel

Photo: Faed's Shakespeare and His Friends at the Mermaid Tavern

Hello to all the new faces at the writers group tonight!  Nice to meet you guys; good to see the familiar faces, too.  Some pockets of great writing in all the pieces covered tonight.  I look forward to seeing you guys next month.  Can you believe it'll be 2011?!?  Obama's been president for over 2 years, by the way.  Weird...

Speaking of writing, I'm happy as hell to announce that I've started the novel about the concentration camp, about how the prisoners must know a creative talent to make their captors look "good" to the world via forced and fake propaganda.  I found a comfy place to write--in a huge comfortable chair, which I can curl up in, in the living room with my better half--and I handwrote the first eight pages of this new novel.  Eight pages of my tiny handwriting is about 10 full pages of type.  Not too bad.  And I've never written fiction in front of someone before, in the same room as someone.  Harlan Coben once told me that he wrote in restaurants, in parks, etc. all the time, that he hardly ever wrote in his own office.  I can't imagine that, but it would be much more convenient if I could do that.  So I am going to try.

If I'm confident enough with this new writing, I'll place an excerpt here sometime soon.  My better half said tonight: "Wow!  You're really great at starting things!  But you're terrible at finishing them!!!"  (She's wanted me to finish Apocalypse before I started something new.  This advice will undoubtedly prove to be correct.)

So true, so true.  But I'm gettin' there.


  1. I wanted to ask you last night... do you handwrite most of your work first? Or is it an activity that helps you start something? I ask because I know some people prefer to handwrite, but I'm the opposite-- my hand can't keep up with what I'm thinking and what I want to say, but my fingers can when I use a keyboard. It's gotten so bad that I can't even keep journals on paper anymore, I wind up typing my thoughts out, printing them, and gluing them into a journal!

    I also have trouble writing in front of others. Sometimes I'll change the font to yellow or some or light color so that someone sitting next to me can't look over my shoulder. How neurotic is that?

  2. Colleen, sorry for responding to this so late! I do handwrite a lot of my stuff, and I find that when I don't, I'm not creating at all--or it really stinks. I also have the problem with the hands keeping up with the brain, but I can't type it out anymore (I used to for a long time when writing it down escaped me.) because my typing also can't keep up with my brain--and I have to go back and change the miskeys, plus I found typing a computer-journal to be to...sterile. Very old-fashioned, I know. Now, though, I'm at a point where I have to just write my chapter drafts, or type my chapter drafts, wherever I happen to be when the opportunity or mood strikes. Lately I've been handwriting until I figure it out, and then typing when I'm ready to do drafts.